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September 2014
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Syndication

Chromebooks can already remotely access apps on a nearby Windows or OS X machine. Now they can stream and use applications created to run on Amazon's servers. On this week's podcast, we discuss how that and native Android apps fit in the Chrome OS strategy.

Direct download: 091614_03-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:Technology -- posted at: 12:23 PM

This week Kevin and I began the podcast with his thoughts on the Apple event he attended last week. We both think the upcoming watch is a nice device, but it's clear that no one yet knows what we want a smart watch to do. We decided that with wearables it would be a loss if all we ended up with was a choice between varying screen sizes and platforms. The market should be far more customizable, and it's not clear tech firms are the ones that will bring that to us.

We also addressed the results of the poll from two weeks ago, with the realization that seven out of ten respondents do carry their phones with them in the home at all times. Kevin enjoyed telling me I was wrong. Then we talked about Savant's new software and the upcoming Ecobee thermostat that I'm really excited about. Our guest for the week is actually Stuart Lombard, a co-CEO of Ecobee who talks about the new thermostat the firm is launching and the future of comfort in a smart home. Enjoy!

Host: Stacey Higginbotham
Guests: Kevin Tofel and Stuart Lombard, co-CEO at Ecobee

  • Thoughts on the furture of wearables and Apple's watch
  • Kevin is right, most people do carry their phones at home
  • Savant gets flexible with new app
  • Ecobee's new thermostat and how presence could be the killer app
  • What's the future of comfort in a smarter world?
Direct download: 091514_01-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00 PM

If you think of Marten Mickos as the outspoken CEO of Eucalyptus, think again. HP bought Eucalyptus, along with all its IP and its team, and made Mickos SVP and GM of HP cloud, reporting to CEO Meg Whitman. Martin Fink remains CTO and director of HP Labs.

This week, the two Martins and Bill Hilf, SVP of product and service management for HP Cloud, are our guests and fill us in a bit on what[company] HP[/company] gets in this deal. Given Mickos past digs at OpenStack -- one quotable quote out of Structure 2014 was “If you have too much money, you buy [company]VMware[/company]. If you have too much time, you buy OpenStack." The implication being is if you don't have too much of either, buy [company]Eucalyptus[/company].

The HP company line is that its private/hybrid/public clouds are all about open-source, specifically OpenStack. Eucalyptus is an open-source alternative to OpenStack. And given that Eucalyptus supports the major Amazon APIs, it has insights into how enterprise customers use [company]Amazon Web Services,[/company] knowledge which could come in handy for HP's own cloud push.

And in the first 15 minutes, Derrick Harris and I hash out this news as well other big-name hires -- [company]Google[/company] snapped up former [company]Red Hat[/company] CTO Brian Stevens to head up Google Cloud Platform,and give it more enterprise cred and [company]Amazon Web Services[/company] hired Bill Vass, former CEO of [company]Liquid Robotics.[/company]

Marten Mickos, SVP and GM of HP Cloud business.
Marten Mickos, SVP and GM of HP Cloud business.

 

Direct download: 091114_01_01-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:06 PM

No connected light bulbs in this week's podcast, guys. We're getting kind of nerdy with a discussion of the robot invasion of our homes featuring this week's co-host Signe Brewster who discusses the Jibo robot as the face of the smart home, how to define a robot and the latest Dyson vacuum. Yes, it's connected.

We also delve deep into both the economic and technical needs of the smart home and the internet of things with Paul Brody, from IBM, who has assembled a platform called Adept that he thinks will be idea for connecting devices for the internet of things. The Adept platform will be open source and involve block chain as the transaction processing engine, telehash for data distribution and BitTorrent for exchanging the files between devices. To get to the point where this is possible, Brody has some ideas about the future of embedded processing and then some awesome ideas about where such an architecture will lead us. It's a good listen, y'all.

Host: Stacey Higginbotham
Guests: Signe Brewster and Paul Brody, who leads IBM’s mobile & internet of things consulting practice in North America

  • We won't get Rosie from the Jetsons; our robot helpers are already here.
  • What's new in research labs for the internet of things?
  • How could you apply block chain to the internet of things?
  • Why the era of embedded processors is over
  • What can you do with Adept and more intelligence in the device and why bother with it?
Direct download: 090814_01-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00 PM

Zapier's aim in life is to make third-party APIs -- even crazy APIs -- accessible to people who want to knit together their own "best-of-breed" apps suite. The startup was formed by University of Missouri buddies who decided it would be great to be able to take your own favorite apps and make them work together (wait for it) seamlessly. Now it's got a few hundred integrations or "Zaps" available.

But that work comes with its headaches. Today's guest, Zapier co-founder Bryan Helmig  admits that providing quality of service across disparate apps is tough and is one reason Zapier employees might be considered masochists.

Zapier co-founders  (left to right) Wade Foster, Bryan Helmig and Mike Knoop
Zapier co-founders (left to right) Wade Foster, Bryan Helmig and Mike Knoop

In theory you could do some nutty applications -- say big payment comes in from Stripe will cue the disco ball drop in your home office. You get the picture. In theory, [company]Zapier[/company] can make that all happen for you.

Other hot topics this week -- Google's foray into quantum computers -- as in it may design and make its own. Remember when [company]Google[/company] was a "search" company? Also,  Teradata's acquisition of Think Big Analytics. Oh and the rebranding of Google Enterprise as Google for Work. This may seem sort a putting-lipstick-on-a-chicken kind of thing but is really worth a look.

Direct download: 090314_01-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:06 PM

Plenty of sites -- including this one -- have changed to a more responsive design, meaning only a single page needs to be developed for all screen types and sizes. These web pages dynamically adjust to fit different screens. As good as that sounds, images are still a challenge and that's where the new picture element comes into play; this HTML tag is now part of the Chrome 38 beta. Tune in to this week's podcast to hear more on why a picture may be better than an image when it comes to elements on a web page.

Hosts: Janko Roettgers and Kevin C. Tofel

Direct download: 090214_01-AudioMp3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:02 AM

There's a battle brewing in the business models for the internet of things between companies that want to offer people a quality service that they control and charge the customer for, and those who are in it for the data or incremental revenue. Kevin Meagher, who is the VP and GM of Lowe's Smart Home, is my guest this week and he discusses his perspective on the smart home, Lowe's Iris system and what ultimately will benefit consumers from his perspective. He also shares his thoughts on what it means to be open and how startups can get their products on Lowe's shelves. He'll share more at our Structure Connect event in October.

Before we get to Meagher's interview, Kevin Tofel and I engage in wild speculation about Apple's theorized wearable possibly launching on September 9 and also discuss the silliness of putting apps designed to engage users on form factors like smart watches, where the focus should be on notifications. Kevin and I also argued about the role of the smart phone in the smart home, and would like our listeners to weigh in by answering the poll questions. I think there are people like me who don't always have their phone on their person when inside their house and Kevin thinks that most people do. Please tell us what you do and if you identify as a man or woman in the poll below, so we can see who is right. The man or woman thing is because I think men might carry their smartphones more, but have no real idea. Listen up and enjoy!

[polldaddy poll=8275650]

Host: Stacey Higginbotham
Guests: Kevin Tofel and Kevin Meagher, who is the VP and GM of Lowe's Smart Home

  • Do we want touch screens embedded in our walls?
  • Let's shamelessly speculate about Apple's wearable
  • I told people to read about Whirlpool's connected strategy because it's worth reading.
  • Why Lowe's thinks a subscription plan makes sense and benefits the consumer
  • How to get your startup's products on Lowe's shelves
Direct download: GIGAOM_PODCAST_INTERNET_OF_THINGS_090114.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00 AM

If you aren't thrilled about the ability to quickly query huge datasets about whatever questions strike your fancy, please listen to this podcast.

This week's guest, Kalev Leetaru, is the [company]Yahoo[/company] Fellow in Residence of International Values, Communications Technology & the Global Internet at the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy in the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Phew. More to the point, Leetaru is pushing the Global Database of Events, Languages, and Tones. Also known as GDELT, this project has taken more than 250 million historical data points from the past 35 years to try to determine patterns between, say, the current unrest in Ukraine and historical events.

If the past is prologue, this is a pretty fabulous tool to have at your disposal. Which it now is, since [company]Google[/company] has made the dataset available via its cloud platform. Leetaru is clearly jazzed about the possibilities here -- being able to fire off questions fast and furious against a huge data set is certainly a change from the not-so-distant past when you had to queue up for access to government- owned supercomputers. And wait.

Now, with huge datasets and the compute power to crunch them readily available, it's hard not to catch his enthusiasm. What's truly exciting about this is the ability even lay researchers have to follow up on tangents that crop up during their work. They might end up being wild goose chases. Or result in valuable insights. You can't know until you pursue them. And GDELT now enables that pursuit.

But first, in an abbreviated intro, Derrick Harris and I highlight news of the week, including [company]VMware[/company] & Friends' new data center appliance, [company]Google's[/company] acquisition of Zync and a few other topics.

Kalev Leetaru
Kalev Leetaru

 

 

Direct download: GIGAOM_PODCAST_STRUCTURE_SHOW_082714.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00 AM

The Chrome Remote Desktop client can help get around some of the limitations of a Chromebook: Just connect to and control a Windows or Mac PC. What you don't have -- or want -- that remote computer though? Enter Citrix and VMWare, which both announced virtual desktop support for Chromebooks this week. It's another strategy for Google to win the battle over traditional computing, even if its aimed mostly at enterprises.

On this week's podcast, we discuss the timing of this development (which follows last week's low-cost Windows laptop news) and share an early look at a way to send commands directly to an Android device from the Chrome browser or a Chromebook. There's new hardware to discuss too: Acer is in the Chromebox game.

 

Direct download: GIGAOM_CHROME_SHOW_082614.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00 AM

It's late summer, and most of the tech world is devoid of actual news, but when it comes to the internet of things we have a new smart home hub to discuss in the Peq and a guest who can help explain some of the many protocols associated with the industrial internet. James Kirkland, the Chief Architect for Intelligent Systems and the Internet of Things at Red Hat. joined me to talk about automating trains, middleware for the internet of things and the pros and cons of different protocols from MQTT to DDS.

Before I got too industrial, Kevin Tofel and I talked about my demo of the Peq system (I'm setting up the review unit this week) and an Android Wear app that lets you control your phone with gestures (if you have a smart watch that runs Android Wear). We also talked about how to build apps and controls for shared devices like lights and thermostats, in an environment that normally thinks about building apps for a personal device (the smart phone). Enjoy. There's something for everyone in this week's show.

Host: Stacey Higginbotham
Guests: Kevin Tofel and James Kirkland, the Chief Architect for Intelligent Systems and the Internet of Things at Red Hat

  • My peek at Peq, a home hub with a pretty interface
  • Check out Kiwi, an app that turns your gestures into commands
  • How do you build interfaces for shared devices?
  • Could the industrial internet prevent train derailments?
  • A breakdown of industrial protocols and when to use what
Direct download: INTERNET_OF_THINGS_PODCAST_8-25-14.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00 AM